The following is a guest post by ChopDawg.com, an award-winning app development company that has worked with over 180+ startups and companies from all around the globe, helping them bring their web apps, mobile apps, wearable apps and software ideas to life.
Follow ChopDawg.com on Twitter at @ChopDawgStudios.
It’s been a very interesting first few days of the calendar year for us at Chop Dawg, to state the least. As many who follow us on social may know, we’ve brought on a Marketing Director for the first time in the eight years we’ve been a company. Why have we made this decision? Simple. We want to grow our reach, our impact, our revenue and our customer list in 2017 (and the many, many, and I repeat, many years ahead).
With our brand new Marketing Director, he asked me an interesting question. What makes our Twitter engaging? Why aren’t more people seeing engagement on their Twitters? What can we do to help spread the wealth, the message, the practicality?
So, I went to Twitter and decided, let’s ask some of our followers. I choose to ask this question on my personal Twitter account, @DasJoshua, which can you see here.
Overall, the responses on the surface seem to make a lot of sense. Most everyone will either retweet a tweet or favorite/like a tweet. It doesn’t take much to do this, right? We no longer live in the era where you had to type RT and manually copy/paste a tweet. It’s the press of a button, a tap on the mouse, a finger press away from sharing on your feed.
However, what makes you take one step further.
What makes someone respond to a tweet?
Press a link.
Truly engage beyond the default, forgettable actions that is retweeting and favoriting.
Here is what we have determined and hopefully, you can apply your own Twitter accounts, personal and business in 2017, to see real results.
1) Create content that impacts your followers, your readers, and isn’t just noise
In theory, this seems simple enough, but in practice, well, it takes a lot of practice.
Most of Twitter is written with the following narrative, what are you doing and/or what is on your mind?
This is a great narrative for when you’re a thought leader, someone whose opinion you respect. However, if you’re a company trying to get the attention of a specific niche audience, or a personal Twitter account without much of a following or validation, your tweets may disappear in the sea of noise that is a Twitter feed.
You need to stand out by creating content that impacts, content that is personal to your audience.
Your first step to sticking out with valuable content is to stop thinking of your Twitter followers as well, followers. They are your audience. Your reader base. If you’re a magazine, you are challenged every issue to keep your reader base, keep their attention, and keep giving them value. A lot of people on Twitter take for granted what a following is, and produce crap instead of real value, insights, and knowledge to why someone may have followed them in the first place.
Start writing things of value. If you’re a company like us, that means, writing behind-the-scenes to how we obtain clients, what makes the best apps the best in 2017, how we run our company internally, how we handle client meetings, how we become inspired, stay motivated, and work at peak performance every single day. Things that others want to know, so they can begin adapting this practicality in their own lives, their own businesses.
Twitter has become more than just a real-time conversation or news engine as the media would want you to believe. For example, Brian Munn has begun favoriting tweets for the purpose of using archived messages that inspire and motivate him in the times he needs it the most for himself. Twitter, and in particular, favoriting, has become a source he can tap into whenever he needs a creative boost.
Aaron, on the other hand, uses the favoriting functionality on Twitter as an archive, for when he may want to re-read a tweet or use it for a specific purpose in the future. He’s built up an archive of utility, which at any point in time, he can tap into when needed, whether that is for a customer of his, a source of motivation, a place to store important things to revisit when needed, or anything else in-between.
So how about engagement, as in, responses to a tweet?
Well for a starter, ask yourself, are you tweeting something that is asking for people to respond?
Again, revert to the tweet used as a reference for the two examples above. I asked on my personal Twitter account, a very personal question to my audience. Retweeting or favoriting, in this circumstance, didn’t offer much utility. We weren’t providing value in a way that was worthy of a retweet. We weren’t providing a source of inspiration to favorite. No, we are starting a conversation, which involves a response.
Roque, hits the nail on the head, when he explains in a tweet back to me, that questions seem to work well. It’s a no-brainer. You’re asking your audience something and the only way to get a response back, is well, by them, tweeting back. Now, this doesn’t mean you should be tweeting broad questions, but for example, you want to write a blog post such as this and need information to reference, you can tweet a question (or questions) as I did. Based upon those responses, you can include them as references in your blog post, and then, share this blog post to your following for more value. What you’ve done is create a funnel of content. You’ve started the conversation on Twitter. You’ve written about the conversation on your company blog with real value. You’ve shared this blog back on social media for others to read. Rinse and repeat. Value, conversation, engagement. Win-win-win when you’re a brand trying to impact others while trying to grow your own company too!
2) Your tweets need to stick out
One major change happened to Twitter last year; which honestly, we at Chop Dawg didn’t fully adapt too until just a few months ago (which we aren’t proud of). It’s that Twitter is no longer a real-time feed on your main dashboard. It’s now algorithm-driven, based upon what Twitter believes you care about the most.
That means Twitter will penalize your tweets that aren’t geared toward your audiences, and/or seems too spammy, by not showing up to everyone on their live feeds. It doesn’t matter if you have 500,000 followers like we do, if Twitter decides your tweet is only worthy of 1,000 people, that is nothing. That is terrible.
You need tweets that support engagement, and engagement quickly, so Twitter will find your content not just valuable to your audience, it will keep spreading awareness. It’s never been more important than now to create great content.
There are many ways to get your followers attention on Twitter. For starters, don’t be boring.
Well, that seems super simple to you, right?
It is but we are inherently lazy, which is why most do not apply this.
Unless it is needed, don’t make a tweet just text in 2017.
Begin giving your tweets more depth, start adding multimedia to it to give it the extra visual awareness to stop someone scrolling on their feed to look at your content.
You don’t need to get crazy.
It can be as simple as an image with existing text, as I had done here.
You can also get more creative by being more personal.
You can respond to tweets via video, showing how much you care to your followers like I have done here, here, here, here and, of course, here. Notice how I received so many responses? I asked a question, a question which would give my followers value.
Perhaps my favorite strategy, though the hardest, is to do something that most on Twitter aren’t doing. As of this moment, the answer is very clear and easy. It’s live streaming. (This may not be the case in just a few months from now as the live streaming market on Twitter becomes saturated, but timing for these type of things is key)
For example, as I am working on my book with my publisher, I am live streaming the meetings with them to give a behind-the-scenes look at how my book is coming together, and to show my followers how it looks to be creating a book from the inside. Not only do my followers love it, I am averaging over 1,000 people watching me create my book live once a week as I do it. Here’s an example of what the real-time activity looked on one of my recent live streams.
3) Create the conversion yourself by responding back to your followers
This is the one tip that is a little mind-boggling for me to write.
So many of you reading this blog post, do not respond back to the bulk of tweets that you, and/or your business receive.
If you want to build trust, if you want to add a layer of personality, if you want to show people that there is a real person on your side of the monitor, be a human and respond back.
Here is the crazy part. When you do, not only are you establishing more trust to the party on the other side, not only can you spark additional conversations following a specific technique I wrote about months ago, not only are you building a bond with your followers that can and will pay dividends in the long-run, you’re manipulating Twitter’s algorithm in your favor.
Twitter wants to show your tweets to people and topics you care about now, thanks to their algorithm feeds. When you respond back to your following’s tweets, and they keep responding back, favoriting, retweeting, you’re having them tell Twitter how much they love your content. You’re now increasing your probability of having your tweets displayed when they log in and view Twitter. Retention is king, and you’re creating your own distribution network for the ultimate awareness on a platform you can do a lot in. Look no further than us at Chop Dawg for example. 80% of our revenue the past few years have come from Twitter.
Twitter isn’t going anywhere. I realize more than ever, people are predicting the demise of the platform, claiming retention is at an all-time low, that it won’t last. Here is the thing, though, ask yourself, if Twitter didn’t exist, what would be its replacement? Facebook? Instagram? Snapchat? The answer is that it may exist already, but the market doesn’t care and/or is focused on it yet. Until you can safely say an alternative, a better alternative exists to where you can grab daily motivation, see real-time news, and reach people one-on-one as personal as Twitter, it is here to stay.
Instead, apply real tactics for the Twitter we have today. Twitter from 2011 is dead. Twitter from 2017 is here. Start applying these ideas, concepts, and practical steps now, and start seeing the dividends. Perhaps the most important thing to remember is once you become an expert and apply these techniques, as we are at Chop Dawg, what works today will probably not work tomorrow. You need to stay up to speed, up to date, and continually pushing Twitter to its limits to work in your favor, which means, in your followers’ favor. Give your followers what they want, where they want it, how they want it, and in the medium that sticks out the most for them, and you have the secret recipe that markets, businesses and individuals want, but do not realize, they already have.
If you have any other recommendations to those reading this blog post too, please share them below in the comment section. We are encouraging more activity from our reader base in 2017, and more importantly, more value for our readers. We want to hear what techniques, strategies, or suggestions that you are doing to maximize your Twitter, give value to your followers, and provide you with the most engagement possible.